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Paper Jam (2015)

 

Three interactive posters (rhythm, harmony, and melody) invite the audience to create a song with the touch of their hand. The posters can be played individually to try out the various instruments and musical concepts, or together with a group of people to create a complete song from scratch. Playing the poster is easy: Every touch with your hand produces a sound – for example, a person can use both their hands to play a pair of bongos, or all ten fingers to play the piano (but on paper!). You can even switch instruments. The posters are polyphonic, so that the audience can touch various fields simultaneously to create sound layers. 

 

On the front, the posters contains visuals (instruments, scales, symbols, etc.), that, when touched, produce a corresponding sound at zero latency. On the back, each poster uses underlying touch-sensitive fields made up of conductive materials to direct the electrical capacitance from the human body to an Arduino Mega. Each signal is interpreted as a MIDI command and sent to a laptop via Bluetooth signal. All technology is hidden from view, which adds to an immersive experience. A digital audio workstation (Propellerhead Reason or Ableton Live) brings the signals to live and even offers the opportunity to record the song. Singing is always encouraged too!

 

The goal of the posters is to bring people together (strangers or friends) to discover music making through touch, without necessarily knowing how to play an instrument.

 

See below for mock-ups of the posters.